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tv   Anderson Cooper 360  CNN  May 31, 2012 1:00am-2:00am PDT

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it's spelled r-h-o-d-e-island. that is it for us. i want to thank my buddy piers for giving me the chance to sit in tonight. i want to thank my buddy piers for giving me a chance to sit in tonight. "ac 360" starts right now. 10:00 p.m., we begin keeping them honest with newly discovered atrocities in syria. the regime's on-going and outright lies about what is happening and the two super powers protecting dictator bashar al-assad hold on power. the backdrop today, another massacre, this time in the eastern province of deir al-zor. this is a scene more than 100 miles from the massacre that took place in houla. 13 bodies in this one discovered last night. hands tied behind their backs. all of them shot to death. syrian dissidents telling "the new york times" they were electrical workers who refused
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to end their protest strike against the government. if that is true, along with the manner of killing it strongly suggests either government forces or pro-government militias were responsible. there of course is no such thing as absolute proof of that, or who was responsible for the slaughter of dozens and dozens of children that took place in houla on friday. they both fit a pattern. today, british correspondent alex thompson bravely got in to houla to speak with the survivors of the atrocities. he'll join us shortly. we said this last night, it bears repeating the regime not only denies involvement in the murders, denies any violation of the two month old cease fire at all. >> during this time, syria has not done a single violation or the initial understanding between syria and united nations. >> keeping them honest, that is not true. as 360 first reported,
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government forces were shelling homes on day one of the cease fire, hours after bashar al-assad toured that city. about houla, even diplomats speak bluntly. >> what is clear, government forces were involved, they were shelling using tanks and artillery, appears to be militia entering houses and slaughtering people in what is really an abominable crime. that took place throughout the day on friday. >> so the assad regime is flatout lying about the cease fire and more evidence in the complicity in the hula massacre and so many others. yet, the regime is being protected by a pair of superpowers. that would be russia and china. they're blocking the tougher measures. the chinese foreign ministry said china opposes military intervention. a senior russian diplomat saying decisions on military operations
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in syria can't be guided only by emotions. now recall that his boss this week tried to spread the blame around by equating the carnage in syria to a night at a disco. >> you know, it takes two to dance. takes two to tango. in the current situation, in syria, what we have is not the real tango, we seem to be having a disco party, many players are dancing. they should all dance in the same way. >> yes, that translation is correct. he's comparing the massacre to a disco party days after it happened. since then, there has been another, with the regime again strongly implicated in both and as many as 12,000 people killed over the last 15 months. whatever you think about how it is going to end and what is going on in syria, absolutely nobody is there dancing. as we mentioned alex thomson of britain's channel 4 was in houla talking to survivors of the massacre. he joins us by phone.
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from damascus. alex, i know you spoke to one man in particular in great detail what happened on that day. what did he tell you? >> he told me what a number of different people, in fact scores of different people in different times and different places around the town, all said, so i rather used him to recharacterize what everybody in the town is saying. they say that after the initial shelling on friday at mid-afternoon at 3:00 p.m., a group of around 100 men came from different villages that surround this area. they are villages that surround the town of hula which is itself sunni. about 100 of these men came in, he says everybody else they were wearing military-style uniforms, but were civilians. civilian militia.
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they had a well-known local slogan written in pen on their forehead or written on bandanas tied around their forehead, and that is how they were identified as shiia. they went literally from house-to-house and building-to-building slaughtering people. >> alex, tell me more about the shabia, the civilian militia. how are they connected to the military and what did the slogans that were penned on their foreheads say? >> a number of people identified to me the villages they came from, both from the east and west of the town. and it's incredibly close, you can see the villages quite clearly. they are a maximum of five miles away from houla. everybody in the town is absolutely convinced that these people came from the villages and using underlying intentions as a method of settling scores in this civil war. and the question you have to ask
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is, how is it 100 armed militia were able to come in and slaughter family after family, in an area which was an intensive shelling zone prior to them arriving, and yet when they came in the area, no shells fell on them. >> last night you were saying that we may never know exactly what happened in houla and today it sounds as if you feel almost certain of what happened in houla. you used the word collaboration and coordination. do you feel this is the accurate, valid story from this particular witness and others in the town? >> i feel having got in the place at last being able to conduct my own albeit brief investigation, i cannot convey to you what it's like there. you are simply cast from family to family to family, from street to street, building to building. everybody has a story. people will be presented to you with gunshot wounds, with
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shrapnel wounds, endlessly and endless procession of human story and human tragedy has to be said. through that comes a common thread. what i did today was i wanted to concentrate on exactly what people were saying about where they believe these people came from. i think now we have a clear idea. >> alex thomson, thank you. let's turn to former cia officer time.com intelligence columnist and cnn contributor bob baer and fareed zakaria, cnn world affairs analyst and host of fareed zakaria gps. nice to have both of you. fareed, i'll start with you. china could not be more clear, here is what they said. china opposes military intervention, does not support forced regime clear. russia could not be more clear. the russian position is not formed on the basis of emotions. that is the russian first deputy foreign minister. what is the diplomatic solution here?
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>> the diplomatic solution is not going through the u.n. for precisely the reason you described. the russians interestingly, the foreign minister did say that he understood that there was a possibility of a transition and so he did leave the door open to some kind of change. but look, it's not going to happen through the u.n. but we want it to happen with as many allies as we can find, with multinational cover we do. whatever it is we need to do in syria, we need to follow the principles we have been following with libya, with other countries, because there is enormous hostility to the idea of the united states unilaterally getting involved in another muslim country, particularly if there is some kind of military or covert angle to this. >> part of the pressure has to be -- part of the strategy has to be putting pressure on russia, and the deputy national security adviser said this. we don't believe it's in russia's interest to be
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associated with the assad regime. what was he trying to say? what did he mean? >> i think they are hoping the obama administration is hoping the russians will see the assad regime is doomed, that it makes sense for them to begin repositioning themselves where they oppose the assad regime. there is no question russia will not cooperate in this venture. all russia will do is dragged along kicking and screaming, if it believes this transition will happen anyway. so the hope here is to create a kind of dynamic in which the russians realize all right, since this is going to happen, in a year or so, or maybe sooner, we might as well stop being the principle obstacle to a post-assad syria. >> bob, do you think the transition will happen anyway? when you really -- you've said that if everybody, hypothetically russia were to say, okay, and china were to say, okay, actually the
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international community would be stuck they won't know what to do. what do you mean by that? >> well, syria is a mess. there is no simple solution, there is no decapitating the regime, getting rid of bashar al-assad and coming to a solution. we are looking at a community, the allowites on the edge of survival, will fight to the very end. their lives are at stake. we can decapitate the regime. it won't make any difference. the russians and chinese are being very pragmatic about it. frankly, i think the white house is, you know, saying hold me back, hold me back. we don't want to go in syria, there is no easy solution, we can't separate the communities. we could use some force against their armor, from the air, but what will that get us? could get us a worst civil war. >> so then, fareed, if as bob says if you decapitate the leadership, it really doesn't make a difference.
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is it time to seriously look at military intervention? is there a stomach for military intervention, the people who pushed for military interventions, others say no. is it doable? >> i think it's very tough and i think what bob meant is even if you were to militarily intervene, it would be difficult. the alowites realize in a post-assad syria, they will be massacred. they will hold on for dear life. syria, remember, is 10% the size of libya, three times as many people. so geographically a different situation. in libya you had vast swathes of the country where the rebels could run and hide, set up a government. none of that is possible in syria, notice the rebels don't control a single town. i think bob is right, this is a very tough case. >> bob, let's talk about chemical weapons. i know you're an expert on that. tell me a little about the chemical weapons that exist
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there and who controls them and just how deadly they are. >> the military controls them. they have vx. they're binary chemical agents, sarin as well. the syrians are most advanced military in the middle east with sophisticated weaponization of biochemicals, barring none. i think that the alowites with the back to the wall, would use these, if it were an invasion, if intervention or if the regime were going to collapse. i think fareed hit the nail on the head. this is a very serious position, and we just don't know what they are going to do. this goes back to the white house's reluctance to get involved. >> i was going to ask you that. is there a sense it's all these chemical weapons that are underscoring the reluctance to jump in? >> absolutely. i don't know where they are now but i would imagine they are disbursed, we can't hit the things, can't contain them, we have to assume they are going to
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use them. and so every day when the white house wakes up, they're balancing the dangers of going into syria, and also let's don't forget this could spread in other places. i keep on hearing about problems in jordan. there's been fighting in lebanon, the turks are involved, this could effect iraq, that could send it in a civil war. we're very much on a tightrope here and it's tough. >> remember, the lebanese civil war, which in some ways looks like this, lasted for ten years, 150,000 to 250,000 people died. one million people displaced. this could turn in a high stakes game. >> a terrible thing to compare it to. thank you gentlemen, appreciate it. want to know what you think we're on facebook and at twitter. >> coming up next, a rising young star in the republican party talks about what it will
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take to win over the latino vote. the question tonight, will making him mitt romney's running mate make a difference? that is raw politics.
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raw politics now part of the special in-depth reporting this week on the power of the latino vote. tonight, how republicans are
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trying to close the more than 2 to 1 advantage president obama had in the last election. the obama campaign is trying to maintain its advantage rolling out a new set of spanish language ads today. according to the national journal outspending the romney side 76-to-1 in latino ads in the last five weeks. on the republican side, there is growing talk of a potential game-changer. mitt romney picking a latino running mate, several names have been mentioned, and one is getting lots of attention. it's senator marco rubio of florida. he's cuban american, just got back from inspecting the facilities at guantanamo bay. he will speak tomorrow at the council on foreign relations. are these signs that he's polishing his foreign policy credentials? who is he? here is tom foreman. >> reporter: just as barack obama emerged nearly a decade ago as a young democratic darling, 41-year-old marco rubio is a rising star of the
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republican party. in part because he is more than willing to take on the president. >> barack obama is a reality. for millions of americans life is worse than three years ago because he doesn't know what he's doing. >> reporter: the son of cuban parents, rubio has the resume of a serious political player who can connect the gop to increasingly valuable latino voters. from miami, roman catholic, after high school went to college on one year sports scholarship, eventually becoming a lawyer. he is married to a former miami cheerleader. and has four children. he has served in local and state government and is currently the junior senator from florida who never miss as chance to explain how his party needs to build strong, lasting ties to the latino vote. >> one of the mistakes we make, we view it through the lens of the next election. i think this has to be a longer terp commitment than that. >> reporter: simultaneously showed stripes that enchanted
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the tea party, even while threading the needle on potentially explosive matters like the arizona immigration law. >> i believe arizona and states like arizona have a constitutional right to do what they did. >> reporter: it makes him a perfect amalgam of what many political analysts say republicans need, a fresh face that inspires young voters and minorities to give the party a second look, and a staunch defender of many basic republican values. fidel castro is oddly enough at the center of the single biggest dispute about rubio's record. rubio has long suggested his parents came to america to escape castro. last year it was revealed they left more than two years before castro took power, leaving rubio to explain his claims. >> they always hoped they could return to their country, they tried, for obvious reasons they couldn't and didn't. >> reporter: so far that has been little more than a bump on rubio's fast track to political power. tom foreman, cnn, washington.
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digging deeper now, in the republican search for latino support, where marco rubio fits in to all that is alberto gonzales, he served as attorney general in the george w. bush administration and juan lopez, nice to have you both with me. mr. gonzalez, i'm going to start with you. you have said you don't think in fact that senator rubio would be a good vice presidential candidate. you said basically you think his resume is on the thin side. what do you make of the fact of this trip to cuba and he will be talking at the council on foreign relations tomorrow? is it all about bolstering his cred to be potentially a vice presidential candidate? >> it would do that, it would make him a stronger senator as far as i'm concerned. senator rubio, his story is remarkable. he's a very talented man and obviously i honor his service, but when you look at a vice presidential pick and by the way, obviously governor romney is going to make the decision based on what he thinks is right, but from my perspective, the number one criteria is
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whether someone is ready to step in as president on day one. secondly, i think you want to choose someone who will help you govern. after all, it is often the vice president who is the last person in the oval office with the president. the president hears last from the vice president on very controversial issues. only after a potential nominee satisfies those two criteria, i think then you look as to whether or not can this person help me win an election in november? >> juan carlos lopez, we know that of course the name of senator rubio has been coming up because he's strong potentially in the state of florida but what about outside of the state of florida? does he have the national appeal you might need? >> he's working on it and he is out there and he's getting those credentials. does he have that national recognition? not yet, he's working on it. to be completely honest, there isn't a name right now that you could throw out and say well this is a latino that will
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resonate in every state. but latinos aren't one group, we're not one homogeneous, solid group. there are different groups among the latino community, six or seven out of ten hispanics are mexican or mexican descent. there's not one issue. but senator rubio is one of 100 in a country of 311 million. he's one of two hispanic senators and he gets a lot of coverage in the media, so he is working his way up there. >> mr. gonzalez, you said the republican party needs to do a better job in outreach to latinos. when you look at mitt romney and think of some of the things that he has said on the campaign trail, for example, about latinos, certainly saying listen i'll veto the dream act, talking about self-deportation for illegal immigrants, isn't that going to be a challenge as he tries to appeal to latinos and steal them, frankly from president obama? >> i think it is going to be a challenge. and governor romney has work to do, he and his campaign have work to do in terms of making inroads in the hispanic community.
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the good news is we have time. also running against an imperfect candidate in the eyes of the hispanic community, as far as i'm concerned. someone who has not delivered on promises with respect to immigration, with respect to better economy, and so there is an opportunity for governor romney to make a personal connection. but at the end of the day, i think hispanics like most americans are not going to decide who they will vote for president based upon who the vice president nominee is. they will make the decision based on what is best for them, based on the policies that governor romney is championing. >> juan carlos, let's pick up on that. mr. gonzales talked about the imperfect candidate because of course there are many issues -- latinos felt would be covered, that were not, and many are bitterly disappointed about that. president obama is trying to bolster that support. how big of a challenge does the president have on his side? >> well, he has a challenge but it's not as great as the
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challenge for mitt romney. if you look at the polls, you see it's a 65-27, 70-30, more or less. mr. romney has 27% according to the most recent polls among hispanic, republicans need 40% to win. he has a real great challenge. the president is facing criticism for immigration reform that didn't take place, blaming the republicans for not coming on board and republicans are blaming the democrats. so far it seems a message they are hearing from the democrats is something they like better than what they heard during the campaign from the republicans, especially from mr. romney and so far it seems that with that investment you were talking about and the message from the white house, latinos are hearing something they like more with mr. obama and the white house, than they are from the republicans. >> mr. gonzalez, the last question to you. your boss was mr. president bush. he did well among latinos. what did he have that mitt romney lacks?
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>> i don't know it's governor romney was lacking, president bush had a personal connection with the hispanic community. i think they felt he believed in them. maybe it was his experience. as a border government. >> i guess i should have said outside the state of texas in his corner. >> what we need to see is whether or not governor romney has a capability to make that personal connection with the hispanic community, so they believe that he believes in them. >> alberto gonzales and juan carlos lopez, thanks, gentlemen. appreciate it. ahead this evening, donald trump refusing to back down on his claim that president obama was not born in hawaii. what mitt romney supporters are saying today after mr. trump hosted a romney fund-raiser last night. plus, a look back at what gary tuchman found when he went to hawaii in search of evidence about that birth certificate. let me tell you about a very important phone call i made.
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and save up to thousands of dollars. call this toll-free number now. a new twist in the fight to stop a mosque from being built in one southern town. when "360" continues.
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a "360" follow tonight, it's been more than a year since "360" went to hawaii and found proof president obama was born there. we'll show you the report in a moment. it's been also more than a year since president obama released his long form birth certificate, which should have settled the issue once and for all. for many people it did. but in oh, so many ways, donald trump is not most people. now, the day after trump hosted a fund-raiser for mitt romney in las vegas, the republican party is insisting that no one in the romney campaign is buying what trump is selling. here is what newt gingrich had to say outside the fund-raiser in vegas. >> governor romney is not distracted, the republican party is not distracted. we believe that this is an american-born job-killing president. other people may believe that he was born somewhere else and still kills jobs but that is an argument over background, the key fact is for any american
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worried about the economy, obama is a job-killing president. i'm happy to say i believe he was born in hawaii, doesn't change the fact he's killing jobs. therefore, i think that will be the central issue of the campaign. >> gingrich says the republican party is not distracted about trump's latest rant about the president's birth certificate. just as a reminder, here is what he said in the situation room trump that is, with wolf blitzer yesterday. >> donald, have you seen the actual newspaper announcements within days of his birth in honolulu? the honolulu star bulletin we'll put it up there, the birth announcement. back in 1961. >> yes, many people did that. >> listen to me, donald. >> wolf -- >> can i ask? >> can i talk? >> donald, you're beginning to sound a little ridiculous. i have to tell you. >> i think you are, wolf. let me tell you something. i think you sound ridiculous. >> what mr. trump wouldn't do is give any evidence at all to back
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up his claims, that is not new, but what the romney campaign doesn't seem to want to do is dump mr. trump because of the unfounded claims. i pressed romney supporter john sununu on "starting point" this morning. >> it's not an issue. >> you don't think anyone -- you don't think -- >> the romney campaign believes the president was not born in the united states. >> so then how come someone doesn't say donald trump is wrong! we're going to tell -- >> donald trump is wrong. the president was born in the united states. >> so, as i mentioned it has been more than a year since these questions should have stopped. president obama released his long form birth certificate, april last year. he released it to settle the issue once and for all, released it because people like donald trump are going on and on making unfounded claims about the president's birth place. as all of that was swirling, just before mr. obama released his birth certificate, we sent gary tuchman all the way to hawaii to look at the facts.
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imagine that, the facts, behind the whole entire manufactured controversy. here is what he found. >> reporter: the honolulu star bulletin newspaper in august, 1961, declares mr. and mrs. ba ram h. obama -- had given birth to a son. a simple announcement that has become part of a complex web of conspiracy theories. with one question looming above all others. >> was president obama born in the united states? the answer, yes. >> have you seen barack obama's original birth certificate? >> yes. >> the doctor is former director of the hawaii department of health. and a devoted republican. until now, she had not talked on camera about this topic. as a republican member of the last republican governor of hawaii do you have any doubt he was born in the united states? >> absolutely not. i have no doubt. >> the doctor was asked by the governor's press secretary to make a statement about the obama
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birth certificate controversy. under hawaii law, a public official can look at someone else's certificate if there is a "direct and tangible interest. she felt she had the interest because of the statement she had to make. so she found the original birth certificate stored in a vault in the department of health building. >> what did it tell you? was it authentic? was he born here in the state of hawaii? >> absolutely authentic, he was absolutely born here in the state of hawaii. >> the doctor says even if she had not seen the original certificate in the health department building, this document, the president's computer generated certificate made public four years ago had proven he was born in hawaii. there is quite a bit of irony over the original birth certificate debate. that is, the original documents are no longer even certified by the state. the health department says president obama or any other hawaiian could still go through the process of getting one, but either way, they are no longer supposed to be used for official purposes. only the computer-generated ones will do. we wanted to see what you get
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when you ask for your hawaii birth certificate. >> birth and death marriage. we met a man and told him we'd pay $10. for a new birth certificate. >> we're here to get a birth certificate for stig. >> we saw his birth announcement in the honolulu newspaper. the same article four names down, another newborn, born 13 hours earlier, barack obama. do you give him the original or electronic? >> computerized birth certificate. >> this is stig's certificate of live birth, the same form barack obama has, every hawaiian gets. when they request a birth certificate. it has his name, his birth date, the date after the president, it was filed august 8th, 1961, this is a raised seal to show authenticity. on the bottom, the copy serves as prima facie evidence of birth in any court proceeding. another part of the conspiracy theory is that the birth
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announcement in the paper is a fake. planted by his family or someone else who wanted to trick the world into believing the future president was born in the u.s. we hear from a long time newspaper reporter in honolulu. there are a number of people who believe barack obama wasn't born in the united states, his mother or grandmother called the newspaper and gave false information he was born in the united states. is it possible that could have gotten in the newspaper? >> that is not possible. under the system that existed back then, there was no avenue for people to submit information that way. >> how did the information get in the paper? >> came from the state department of health. >> we confirmed that fact with the health department, too. all birth announcements printed in the paper came directly from the birth records of the hospital. barack obama not only has the same proof of birth as millions of other hawaiians, he has the current governor's memories of him as a baby. you saw him as an infant? >> oh, sure. >> the governor met the future president soon after he was born.
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because he was close to both of his parents. he remembers his mother ann dunham living in hawaii and pregnant and remembers celebrating the birth with his friends the obamas. >> his mom and dad went to school with me here, and with other folks here in hawaii, and of course we had no idea at the time that the future president of the united states was that little boy, that little baby, and we were very very happy of course that that took place. >> reporter: the former director of the hawaii health department talked to us because she felt it was her duty for the truth to come out. does it anger you this has become a controversy and taking attention away from issues that are important to you? >> no, i find it a bit amusing, and in the sense it keeps resurfacing, over and over again, despite whatever i say and really tells us that the whole conspiracy notion out there that if there is an issue that needs to have a following, it will find one.
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>> i would like to ask people who have this political orientation towards the president, respect us here in hawaii. respect his mother and father. respect the people that i loved, and the people that i knew, and the little boy who grew up here in paradise and became president. >> reporter: last year the president did release his original long form birth certificate. but that obviously still hasn't convinced some people that barack obama was born in the u.s. but facts are facts. it's clear that president obama was born in hawaii, just as the honolulu newspaper announced it in august of 1961. gary tuchman, cnn, honolulu, hawaii. tonight, an unexpected turn in the long running battle over a mosque that is being built in tennessee. the project has exposed bitter divisions in a city that many residents have long considered welcoming. now, a new ruling by a county judge could bring construction to a halt.
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that story is up next.
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new details about a horrifying incident in miami that left one man dead, shot by police, and another man with most of his face missing. that and more when "360" continues.
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up close tonight, a dramatic turn in the battle over a new mosque that is being built in central tennessee. the same mosque, the same ugly battle we reported on last year in our documentary, which was called "unwelcome, the muslims next door." since then the first phase of construction has been nearly completed but with weeks to go, a county judge has ruled that local officials violated state law by not giving proper public notice when they granted the building permit back in 2010. we'll have more on the ruling in a moment. first though, quick recap, of how it got there. this is all playing out in murfreesboro, tennessee, a city of 104,000 people, 140 churches and one mosque which the city's
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250 muslim families have outgrown. the new mosque is bigger, one piece of a sprawling islamic center on 15 acres of land. for more than two years, opponents tried to block construction. backlash that's included lawsuits, intimidation and arson. what we found in murfreesboro last year was a community that was bitterly divided. >> we as citizens, we have families and children in this community and we're trying to look out for our future. >> we thank you for your love. >> kevin fisher has lived in murfreesboro for 20 years, he's a corrections officer and single father. in may of 2010, kevin was stunned to discover local officials had approved plans for a 53,000 square foot islamic center in his hometown. >> neighbors were outraged something of this nature was being basically shoved down our throats. we didn't know anything about it.
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>> reporter: a month later, the typically sleepy county commission meeting was anything but. a few residents complained about the lack of notice of the mosque plan. >> i would respectfully ask for expanded public hearing again. >> reporter: virtually everybody spoke out against the threat of islam. >> everybody knows who is trying to kill us, it's like we can't say it. >> reporter: local officials refused to reconsider their unanimous approval of the plan. >> we decided to hold a march so america the whole world, everybody could see the people didn't get notice. so that's what we did. >> ignore intolerance. >> reporter: many in murfreesboro supported the mosque plan. the protest on that june day drew hundreds of people of different faiths, rallying in support of religious freedom. among the supporters an 18-year-old muslim in murfreesboro.
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>> you could see in their eyes, you could see that hate. >> i didn't say to hate them. i just said we don't need them here. >> reporter: as we said the first phase of the mosque is nearly finished. but in his ruling the county judge said the plans for the mosque are now void. so it's not clear what happens next. the court told us today the case is still pending, there has been no final order. the leader of the islamic center of murfreesboro told us they will continue with construction, until they receive orders to stop. joining me by phone this evening sally wall, a vocal critic of the mosque and was in our documentary. also her attorney, joe brandon, joins us. nice to see both of you. sally, i'll begin with you if i can. what do you make of the ruling, how do you feel about it? >> well, he ruled exactly the way i thought he would, because there was no due process. it simply, they did it all behind closed doors, it was under the table.
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there were several meetings with county officials and people, and the muslims and they got the whole thing decided and nobody knew a thing about it until it was announced in the paper on i believe it was may the 28th. >> now what the judge has said the permit is revoked except that of course this is not the final decision is what he also said. so joe, the imam tells us he will continue with construction unless he's told by the county to stop. the building code department has not revoked their permit. the sheriff said he's not going to be tapped to serve any kind of a stop work order. so what do you make of all that? >> well, it's pure arrogance and that is all it can amount to. we have proceeded in the proper fashion. we went into the courtroom to file our lawsuit. we have been in litigation now for about 18 months. chancellor corlew declared all permits issued are void.
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don't forget in this particular case, less than a quarter of 1% of the residents of rutherford county received any type of notice, and the chancellor ruled that was insufficient. as a result of that, they need to stop building. they are aware of that, there were secret meetings that occurred in the beginning with the mayor and planning director in this particular case. they knew they would be in the islamic center, they knew they were required to go before the planning commission to get approval and now that that has been declared void, they want to say that they don't know anything about it and they are allowed to continue to build and that is not acceptable. >> in his ruling he never says the words "you must stop construction" he does not say that. the ruling is eight pages long. i have gone through it. he does not say that. everyone on the side opposing yours says until someone tells us officially even the judge says this is not the final ruling.
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it still has to go through the appeals process. the case is a pending case. this comes from the judge himself. final order hasn't come down. he has only issued an opinion on this. this is from the clerk in the judge's office. so it sounds to me like it's not decided that in fact the work has to stop. but i want to ask a question back to sally. the folks who are on the other side of this issue, sally, from you and you and i have spoken a lot about this, have said first you came up with a traffic problem as an issue, water quality as an issue, then this process of lack of notice as an issue. in court as we showed in our documentary, joe was arguing islam is not a religion, that was another issue to come up and basically throwing stuff against the wall trying to make it stick just because you do not like muslims in your town. is that true? >> soledad, the thing that i said from the very first was that there was no public knowledge until it was a done deal.
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and that is true. and it's not a matter of islamaphobia with me. the county government is supposed to operate in a particular way. they are not supposed to meet under the table. they are not supposed to disobey the sunshine law. people who live in an area where a mosque or anything else is going to be built are supposed to have a right to say something about it and in this case, there was nothing said until it was in the paper on may the 28th. >> the judge agreed with you in his decision today, but he also said that the people who want to build the mosque can go back to the commission. >> yes, they can. >> they can do that on june 11. >> the commission might not pass it. >> they can re-present their case again and in fact there will be no public hearing that the voices of the people won't be allowed to be heard so i'll
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coming up, an update on a story from years ago, the toxic tril ers used as emergency housing after hurricane katrina, people who lived in them said they were hurt by the high levels of formaldehyde and now a multimillion dollar settlement. details on that ahead.
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i'm susan hendricks with the 360 news and business bulletin.
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>> a "360" follow, manufactures and installers of the trailers used as emergency housing after hurricane katrina and other storms have reached a million dollar settlement with people who say they were hurt by high levels of formaldehyde in the units. cnn discovered high levels of that when we had the trailers tested. a security video posted by the miami herald captures the gruesome attack on a homeless man whose face was chewed off by his attacker. the video quality is not great, and it's shot from a distance, but it shows the brutal 18-minute attack as it unfolded. a sharp drop in the stocks fueled by worries of the health of spanish banks, and the dow lost 160 points. the sea world killer whale shows may go in for changes. a judge ruled that sea world trainers should be protected by physical barriers or similar safety barriers while performing. it stems from the death of a
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woman performing. and the youngest person to qualify for the national spelling bee, 6-year-old lorianne madison stumbled a bit today. >> e-n-g-l-u-v-i-e-s. >> that is incorrect. >> it's i-n-g-l-u-v-i-e-s. >> oh, so sad. not the outcome she wanted, but in our book, you're still amazing. we had to let you know. a big future ahead of you, lorianne. soledad, back to you. >> thanks, susan. we'll be right back. uh-oh.
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